Kemet - Board Game Box Shot

Kemet

| Published: 2013
86 47 9

In Kemet, players each represent an Egyptian tribe and will use the mystical powers of the gods of ancient Egypt – along with their powerful armies – to score points in glorious battles or through invasion of rich territories.

The conquest for the land of Kemet takes place over two phases: Day and Night. During the day, choose an action amongst the nine possible choices provided by your player mat and perform it immediately. Once every player has taken five actions, night falls, with players gathering Prayer Points from their temples, drawing Divine Intervention cards, and determining the turn order before the start of the new day.

As the game progresses, they can use Prayer Points to enroll magical creatures and have them join their troops. In addition to intimidating enemies, these creatures provide special powers!

User Reviews (6)

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5
Gamer - Level 5
Detective
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11 of 11 gamers found this helpful
“Fast, aggressive, strategy combat.”

I had hoped to add a fast war/combat game to my collection and Kemet did not disappoint. This is not a game where you build up armies and defenses. It is not about strategic placement or careful maneuvers. It is about swift acquisition, expendable troops, and valuable territories exchanging hands back and forth every round.
The game is about the fight for control of temples and cities, between competing tribes, along the mouth of the Nile. It takes place in ancient Egypt, each tribe starts with limited resources, seeking favor with their gods.
Instead of having factions with different starting bonuses and abilities, you all start even and build your faction as you go. This is daunting the first time you play as there so many Power Tiles and combinations that can give each tribe powers, bonuses, and call down great mythical beasts to join their troops in combat. These tiles give a simple combat game depth, and a quick game lots of replay value.
Combat uses a combination of the number of troops, Power tile bonuses, Mythical creatures, combat cards, and the occasional Divine intervention card. There’s no luck, but just strategy and a bit of bluffing in using the cards, sometimes accepting a defeat just to do more damage your opponent and strategically retreating.
In the end, the game is about Victory Points and these are not won by plotting or defending strongholds. Victory Points are awarded to the attacker, to those that seize temples and grab the most valuable pyramids (Level 4). The game is meant to be played fast and aggressive, and that is how it is won.
With all the above, the game is also beautiful. The components are well made and figures beautifully detailed. Everything in this game is artistic and thematic.
If you are looking for deep turn by turn strategy, with large armies,and fortresses to defend – this is not for you.
If you are looking for fast play, quick skirmishes, and aggressive, bold moves – this is it.
If you also like the idea of moving mythical creatures across the desert, in a beautifully themed ancient Egyptian setting – then this is also for you.

 
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3
Gamer - Level 3
9
5 of 5 gamers found this helpful
“Fast paced soldier bashing, but don't forget the strategy”

As the winds whips the sand dunes in ancient egypt the ancient Gods rise up to do battle for the dominion of Egypt.

In Kemet, you take the role as one of the ancient Gods, having control of one of the cities on the map, which changes according to the number of players, always resulting in a small claustrophobuc environment which ensures lots of interaction

Gameplay:
The game works on a cylical procedure of night and day, were during the night phase resources such as prayer points and divine intervention cards are distributed, while during the day phase various actions as proscribed by your player card can be carried out. This includes praying for more prayer points, moving armies to do battle, constructing pyramids and purchasing technological advancments. The game is a fine balance of buying the right technolgies (which requires ownership of the right level of coloured pyramid [red, blue, white]) and brute force. Technologies are divided into three, spirtiual, defensive and agressive. Technologies are unique and what you purchase will change your game significantly. Combat uses a combination of troop numbers, technology bonuses (including any mythical creatures they may give), combat cards(which are common to all players) and the occasional Divine intervention card. Combat is not luck based, but requires strategy and bluff, were sometimes accepting a defeat which can wipe out your opponents army is a better choice than retreating.

Victory comes in the form of victory points (8 or 10 depending on whether you wish for a short or long game), that can be permanent (from combat victory, sacrifice or technology) or temporary victory points (obtained from occupation of temples, which are transferred as armies occupy and retreat from temples). The fast paced movment, using teleportation, mythical creatures and divine will make for a beautiful highly replayable game.

Pros
- Beautiful atrwork and high quality pieces
- Strategic game, does not depend on luck
- High replayability, no two games are the same
- Game plays smoothly, though has gone into mechanics design

Cons
- Units are unpainted (not really a con as it depends if the gamer likes to paint his own figures or not)
- A bit tricky to understand at first, but after a couple of rounds players soon get the hang of this

 
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5
Sentinels of the Multiverse fan
Plaid Hat Games fan
8
11 of 12 gamers found this helpful | Medals x 1
“WAR! huh! What is it good for? ..um giant war scorpions.”

Kemet is a very fighty game. Its the equivalent of that kid who was always in trouble at school you know the one, used to sit in the back of class and punch random classmates, that’s when he wasn’t doing things to girls near the bike sheds that we wouldn’t know about until the following years biology class.

Antagonistic is probably a more succinct way of describing Kemet. Everything about it is focused on you running up to an opponent and punching them in the throat whilst relieving them of any shiny baubles they might be holding, followed by a victory lap around the twitching body. What I’m trying to say is that you won’t find any of that John and Yoko peace ballad stuff going on in this box.

At its core genetic level Kemet is Risk but with all the randomness removed and given a makeover by some guy who spent the last year just watching 80′s action movies gearing up montages. Its all about war, war and a arms race, its the military industrial complex refined down to its core with the sandy sheen of ancient Egypt applied. This being the ancient Egypt where generals rode about on their giant war scorpions and smote their foes with lightening bolts, you know that one. It achieves this constant heightened state of homicidal impulse by a few simple mechanisms which all boil down to converting enemies into the victory points required to win.

The stage set for this barney is a scattering of kingdoms squeezed into a a thin strip of land. Outside of your city walls squat temples and thrumming in the center of each is a temporary victory point, it sort of bobs there teasing everyone. Note I say temporary because you only get to keep these whilst your troops are in residence. I really wouldn’t get comfortable.

The other type of VP is the permanent variety which are gained most of the time by going to war and winning a battle Ding! You can also gain one by holding two temples at the end of a phase Ding! But that’s not nearly as much fun.
So for a moment let all of that sink in, got it? Right now i’m going to add a couple of other kinks to proceedings.
1. every location is at most 2 spaces away from any army.
2. You can teleport your troops directly from your city to obelisk’s that litter the board and are in all of the temples. Remember Jeff Goldblum in Jurassic park? Well aside from all the vigorous hand movements and purring he was yammering on about chaos mathematics, what he was talking about was this game. Forget about a butterfly in Peking flapping its wings, what he really meant was an army of cat warriors going bamf! all Nightcrawler on us and materializing in the nearest temple. Ooh and those handy obelisk’s are a one way trip there ain’t no coming back.

An early game of Kemet starts pretty much the same everyone begins with a tenuous toe dip into proceedings maybe leveling up a power or moving some troops about and then Bamf! some joker zips across the board and gains a point, everyone does a double take and then the carnage commences with victory points changing hands faster than a groupie backstage at a Rolling Stones concert.

Now all of that would be fun enough, but that is not all that Kemet has to offer, aside from its war game styling’s it also has some Euro going on as well. The game has two distinct phases night and day, the night is a brief pause where you’ll recharge prayer points (the games currency) and potentially gain extra bonuses including Divine Intervention cards (we’re come onto them in a moment), one of the most significant is the player trailing with the least VP can decide the turn order for the next day phase, this can have a huge impact on the proceedings especially in the latter stages of the game.

The day is when the most fun happens. Each player has a board and five counters which they place on it to perform any of the nine actions available, just like a worker placement these are everything from moving to praying for more points or upgrading your pyramids.
Pyramids you say? yes each race has three of these nestled in their kingdom represented by large D4′s one red, one white and one blue, aside from looking cool they also track your level in each of the three powers. These powers are the beating heart of the game sort of like a k-mart for ancient deity’s, they have four levels that can only be purchased if you have the corresponding leveled pyramid in your city.

They start simple enough giving you bonuses to actions or modifiers in battle. Its when you get to the level 3 or 4 powers that things get rather exciting, you can buy the giant creatures which boost any armies that they travel with and aside from coming with really cool mini’s they offer some serious clout on the battlefield. The other thing about these powers are that they are in limited supply, once one has been purchased its gone and only that player has access to it.

The powers are a game on their own combining them allows you to build your races economy, will it be all about the war or a strong defense, there are multiple combinations and its hugely rewarding for return plays as you can tweak a game winning strategy dependent on which powers you take.

Now the one thing I haven’t touched on is the battles themselves, a game revolved around fights better have a **** good way of resolving them or it’ll unravel faster than a ball of twine in a cattery. There are no dice here you control your destiny, each player has the same set of six battle cards some focused on a strong attack whilst others on defense.

Whenever you go to war each combatant plays one and discards one these cards have a few simple stats on each, all come with differing amounts of strength which when combined with the number of units in your army the resulting player with the highest overall strength wins the battle. However in this game you may win the battle but lose the war, you see there are also two other stats wounds and defense, the wounds kill that many units in your opponents army that go undefended by the defense stat regardless of winning or losing.
In addition to the battle cards you also have the Divine Intervention cards, many of these come with additional strength or wound modifiers that are played with your battle card to further boost your stats, again these are secret and can really turn the tide in battles.

Its an elegant solution to this old war business and adds a poker style bluff to any battle where there is never a sure thing, and even a victory can be hollow if your forces take the target only to be decimated by the retreating forces leaving you suddenly a terribly appetizing target for the next warlord.

There is a lot to love in this box, if your group is looking for lighter war game that rewards return visits to the scene of the crime then this is for you. It’s incredibly easy to grasp and play the swathe of power tiles are what add the complexity and can slow down the early games as everyone pauses to contemplate what new weapon of mass destruction to add to their growing stockpile. But oh boy its exciting when you can start to pull of those combo’s. And with how the board is designed there is never any opponent out of reach and in such a condensed area it turns the game into the equivalent of a knife fight in a elevator, except that somebody just brought a bazooka. I haven’t even touched on the fact you can steal an opponents pyramid and then use it to buy those powers for yourself, or how about the initiative power that kills two opponents troops whenever you attack, or teleport that allows you to use the obelisk’s to move about or maybe Holy War that pays out four prayer points for every battle you win. The list goes on and on, and aside from all these juicy mechanism’s you also get all the cool monster mini’s and little armies, this game looks a much fun as it is to play.

If I had to get critical and these are small things, I’m not sure how finely balanced this beast is, which depending on your point of view may be great or not, but certainly some of the powers can give huge advantages if combined. There is also the possibility of a kingmaker in the final rounds, most games do get incredibly tight towards the last few turns and victory can often be determined by the slimmest of margins. But this is all minor niggles, at its heart this is a great great game with strategies only surfacing from repeat plays and unlike Risk and similar games you are never completely out of the running even after a terrible defeat, there is always a way back. Me I love it, it fills that down and dirty war game with enough polish and shiny trinkets that I can’t wait for another go at it.

Originally published @ http://www.whodaresrolls.com

 
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4
Rated 50 Games
9
8 of 9 gamers found this helpful
“Kemet by Asmodee Games Review by David Lowry”

Pyramids tower in the sky… Armies gather for battle… Priests chant to their gods… Massive creatures amass for combat… And the gods send their troops against one another to capture temples, cities and demonstrate their superior power. Ancient Egypt is on display here as armies trek across the desert in search of victory and glory for their gods.

Publisher: Asmodee Games

Game Designer: Jacques Bariot, Guillaume Montiage

Artwork: Dimiti Bielak, Emile Denis, Nicolas Fructus

Players: 2 – 5

Ages: 13 to adult

Playing Time: 90 minutes

Game Mechanics: Area Control, Area Influence, Area Movement, Campaign, Battle Card Driven, Card Drafting

Contents: 1 Board, 48 Power Tiles, 7 Creatures, 25 Divine Intervention Cards, 32 Battle Cards, 53 Victory Point Tokens, 3 Silver Action Tokens, 1 Golden Action Token, 1 Card Index for Divine Intervention Cards and Power Tiles, 60 Army Units, 25 Action Tokens, 5 Prayer Point Markers, 5 Player Boards, 5 Player Order Markers, 18 Pyramid Die

Suggested Retail Price: $69.99

Parental Advisory: Safe for kids

Kemet from Asmodee Games is a strong game that plays in a short amount of time that provides plenty of theme, punch and strategy. Designed by Jacques Bariot and Guillaume Montiage, players vie for victory points while trying to battle each other, acquire special powers to make their armies stronger and controlling temples for their gods. Players will battle back and for temples that give victory points, also achieving victory points if they attack and are successful in combat and race to build their pyramids fast enough to acquire power tiles that also give victory points and special creatures to use in combat. The first player to eight victory points wins! The long version is 10 victory points.

I am not going to do my usual breakdown of rules in this review. Why? Because most of the gamers have seen game before or a million reviews and for those that are just now discovering games again, my thoughts are probably more relevant. Let’s just say that for such a deep game, the rules are very simple, the rule book is very short and it won’t take long at all to learn how to play this game. Kemet is a surprisingly deep game of combat, strategy and thematically very strong. Everything about this game drips its theme, which in my opinion makes it stand out even more. I love a strong theme backed up by sound mechanics and this games has both. I love the fact that everyone starts out exactly the same size and strength and is able to “customize” their army with power tiles that give them completely different sets of strengths and weaknesses. There are never more than two of the same type of power tiles in the game and players can never have more than one of the same tile. This provides for a ton of game re-playability.

Players build up their Pyramids which allow them to buy more powerful power tiles. The Pyramids are ranked level 1 – 4 and if you control any level 4 Pyramid. that gives you a victory point for as long as you hold it. Holding Temples also gives you a victory point at the end of the day phase if you still hold it at that time.

Players may also teleport a section of their army (never more than 5 units) to other parts of the board their Pyramid and landing at any Obelisk on the board for a cost of two Prayer Points (money.) This is an incredible mechanic which moves the game along quicker and allows for players to be in the action more. This is limiting though. The players may only travel from Pyramid to Obelisk. They can’t travel from Obelisk to Obelisk. The players will have to strategize some of their land movement to attack or take over territory.

City walls help protect a players Pyramids to an extent. A player may not attack a city wall unless they are adjacent to it even their movement ability is raised to two spaces. The player must be adjacent to attack another players city. Players must enter into combat if in the same region so this lends to very short alliances and no ability to gang up on another player.

The combat system in Kemet is incredibly simple and most definitely has its risks and rewards. Players choose from six different Battle Cards. Each Battle Card depicts what strength, defense and army loss (if any) they offer. Each battle has the opponents chose two cards, keep one and discard one and play any relevant Divine Intervention cards which may help them achieve victory. The players then total the army strength in the zone, plus any Creature benefits (if one is present,) plus the Battle Cards bonuses and any Divine Intervention Cards effects. The player who has the highest strength wins the battle but not necessarily without loss. Kemet The components for this game are top-notch. The creature figurines are gorgeously sculpted, the board and all the artwork are beautiful and the Pyramids are everyone’s favorite. They are large 4-sided marbled die in red, white and blue colors. The Power Tiles are very thick and of course covered in beautiful artwork. The Battle Cards and Divine Intervention Cards are of typical stock but you shouldn’t need to worry about sleeving them. The army figurines are also very well done especially for their size and all of this can be painted for those that love to do that to add even more of thematic edge to the game.

The one big issue I have with this game is the one player aid they give you in english. That being said there are 5 total in different languages, but being this game is only supposed to be 60 minutes long, having only one player aid to review all the Power Tiles and Divine Intervention cards severely slows the game down. I recommend you make a few copies of this player aid so each player can have one so they can plan before their turn comes back around other wise I promise without fail, people will be passing this back and forth and somehow the person who needs it most gets it last.

Players need to make sure they understand the victory points system and how the temporary versus permanent victory points work. They also need to understand the various ways to achieve them in order to have a chance of winning, especially against warmongering players that love the power of battle and bloodshed.

Kemet is one of the most fun board games I have played this year. It provides an immense amount of strategy, the perfect amount of game stress and immerses the player in the theme quite effectively. The who set of mechanics are incredibly simple to learn and with in no time, players are involved in a deep gaming experience that is very satisfying but not so heavy to ever really be bogged down. I know a lot of people compare it to Cyclades but I have yet to play that game but if you like area control games like El Grande then you will love this game. One caveat is probably not for players who don’t like combat games. Even though this is a simple system and the combat is very minimal in any kind of violence, it isn’t for those who don’t like conflict. For those of us who think of games like Risk, this game makes that game look antiquated and archaic.

Club Fantasci Scoring (Based on scale of 10):
Artwork: 10
Rules Book: 8
Re-playability: 9
Component Quality: 9
Club Fantasci Overall Score: 9

I am giving Kemet 9 out 10 stars because it truly brings so many things into one game effectively. Strategy, thematics, depth and fun all combined into a short 60 – 90 minute game that feels like you really accomplished something when you win. Excellent game and a must have for any gamers collection.

This game is Club Fantasci

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Note: A review copy of this game was provided to me.

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3
My First Heart
7
9 of 13 gamers found this helpful
“Fun ancient warfare game!”

This game was a lot of fun!

There were only a couple of ways to get victory points, so you do have to play a bit aggressively.

It’s your call entirely to the magic/abilities you ascribe to. Any/all combinations could get you the victory. It’s replay is pretty good with the various abilities to purchase in game, but they are one shot purchases so you do need to flesh out a strategy.

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Pro’s -
Easy setup.
Easy to learn.
Again, iconography and artwork will answer most question at a glance after your first play thru.
Abilities are interesting and provide for more ‘Let’s try this’ on the next play thru.
Moderate time to play, leaving room for a second.
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Con’s –
The races don’t really have unique abilities, though they went thru the cost of creating unique race cards. I guess better than nothing though as the artwork was pretty good.

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Overall, a fun game with some good artwork.

 
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3
8
3 of 14 gamers found this helpful
“Egyptian Themed Battle Board Game!”

I watched videos of this game and read lots of reviews on Kemet before I even played it the first time. After playing it once I knew I wanted to own this game. Your Egyptian army is battling for temples using resources that you purchase on your turn. Sometimes the rights combos make a world of difference, but then how risky will you be when you attack and try to hold a temple. The various creatures that you can purchase stay with you for the rest of the game and assist you with battles. There’s even a mechanic in the game that helps the player that’s in last place. Really really love this game. The only negative I would have to say about the game is that it can be a long time between turns unless you’re getting attacked, but that does give you time to strategize your upcoming turn. The game pieces are good quality and the creatures look excellent.

 

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